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Under the Weather


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Sorry I took so long! Silly story had a mind of it's own. Thanks for the kind words from all who were interested in this story.

Title: Under the Weather

Fandom: NCIS

Characters: Sneezy Gibbs and the rest of the group

Disclaimer: I don't own anyone NCIS

Summary: Gibbs has a cold. Abby and Tony fuss.

Gibbs rolled over and slammed his blaring alarm clock. He only hit the snooze button by shear luck. Although generally not a morning person, Gibbs was particularly cross about the buzzing alarm clock because he had woken up in the middle of the night with a dull ache in his sinuses and, even after taking a few advil, he never settled back into a comfortable sleep. He sighed, threw the blankets back and got out of bed. When the cool air hit him, Gibbs shivered a little. This did not improve his mood. Then, when shaving he felt a tickle way up at the bridge of his nose. He sniffed and tried to finish shaving before the inevitable. But a moment later a strong “HuhhCHHHSH!” escaped, the force of which blew little bits of shaving cream across the bathroom mirror. By the time Agent Gibbs left his house he was decidedly not feeling well and in a dangerous mood.

His situation got even worse when Gibbs took his first sip of coffee and found that it irritated his sore throat. He could handle the headache and total lack of energy but Gibbs refused to forego his coffee on account of a sore throat. He managed to get down about half the cup by the time he made it to the NCIS bullpen. As usual, he was there before the rest of his team, however, today he was glad to have a few minutes to himself. Gibbs sighed as he sat back in his chair and rubbed his knuckles hard against his eyes. He switched on his computer monitor and as soon as the blue light hit his eyes he felt the tickle from this morning return. “Huhhh...huhhhCHSHH! hhCHHSH!” he sneezed. Gibbs sniffed thickly and realized there was at least one more coming. He pulled a handkerchief out of his blazer pocket and shook it out. He brought the fabric up to his nose and waited as the sneeze built. His breathing began to get shallow “huhhh...huh...huh...CHHHSHH!” He felt like he was done for the moment and took a big swig of coffee. He swallowed quickly and swore at the burn in his throat that had nothing to do with the temperature of the coffee.

“You okay, boss?” Tony asked as he came around the corner and dropped his stuff on his desk. Gibbs hadn’t even heard him come in.

“Fine, DiNozzo,” he said gruffly. Before Tony had a chance to respond, the elevator doors opened and Ziva and McGee walked into the bullpen arguing about something.

“Listen up,” Gibbs barked, in no mood to mediate. “Unless you’ve somehow located the half million dollars worth of equipment stolen from the Navy research lab, get to work. McGee, Ziva, I want to know every phone call in and out of the lab in the last 72 hours.”

“On it, boss,” McGee said.

“DiNozzo, I want you to go through the--”

“background checks on the employees. I got it, boss. Ow!” Tony said as Gibbs’s slapped him on the back of the head. Tony rubbed his head and followed Gibbs towards the elevator. That wasn’t really a Gibbs-head-slap-worthy comment. “Hey boss, hold up,” Tony said. He was pretty sure the only reason Gibbs stopped was because when he pressed the elevator button the doors didn’t immediately open. “You okay today, boss? You don’t look too hot,” Tony said. Gibbs’s hand again made contact with the back of Tony's head. “Right,” Tony said. “What I meant was, you look great today and good call on the head smack,” he said backing out of Gibbs’s range.

He felt a little bad; the only reason he’d hit DiNozzo was because he was afraid if he opened his mouth to talk he’d lose the battle with the sneeze he’d been fighting. Just because Gibbs knew he was sick didn’t mean the rest of his team had to know he was sick. When the elevator doors closed Gibbs hit the emergency stop button and let loose with a series of strong sneezes, “HuhhhCHHHSHH! CHHHSHH! HuHHHSCHHH!! Huhhh...huh...huhhhCHHHHSSHH!!! The last one bent him at the waist it was so strong. Gibbs pulled out his handkerchief and gave his nose a strong blow. Once he was satisfied that there were no more impending sneezes he released the emergency stop and went to the basement to check on Abby’s progress on the evidence she’d been working on. As soon as the doors opened he heard her shriek,

“Gibbs! What’s the matter? Are you okay?”

He was afraid she had somehow managed to hear him sneezing in the elevator.

“You always come to my lab as soon as I have news for you and I’ve had news for over an hour and you haven’t been down to see me. Could we be losing our psychic connection?” his little gothic scientist worried.

“We’re fine, Abs. I just got stuck in a meeting, that’s all. What’ve you got for me?” While she didn’t seem entirely placated by his story, Abby grabbed his hand and pulled him over to one of her computers.

“Okay, remember the residue that the techs got off the surface of the locks at the Navy lab? Well, it turns out that it’s pretty weird stuff and I don’t mean like just an unusual color or texture weird; I mean like chemical compound weird. Like the kind of wierd you find when you cross a--”

“Get to the point, Abby.”

“Right. Well, I ran it through my electro spectrometer and found high levels of sulfur hexachloride.”

“Why did we find explosives on the locks at the lab when nothing was detonated?”

Abby shrugged. “Your guess is as good as mine,” she said.

“That’s good work, Abs,” Gibbs said and turned to head back upstairs.

“Gibbs, wait a minute. I’ve got more.”

But Gibbs didn’t want to wait a minute. All he wanted was to get back to the solitude of his elevator. Somewhere in the middle of Abby’s rambling he felt another sneeze building in his nose. Gibbs knew it was only a matter of time before he’d sneeze again and, judging by the tingling in his sinuses, he wouldn’t just stop with one. But he couldn’t slap Abby in the back of the head to get away, so he did the only thing he could do: tried to stifle the sneeze as best as possible. “huhhNgxxt.” Big mistake. Gibbs’s whole head immediately itched as his nose rebelled against holding the sneeze back. Gibbs gasped, “HiiihhCHHEEW!! Huh...hihhh...huh...HuhhCHHSHH!!CHHHSHH! huhh...CHHHSHH!” His cover was totally blown. Gibbs straightened up and slowly opened his eyes to find Abby wearing a concerned look and holding a box of tissues. He gratefully pulled a few from the box and blew his nose.

“Bless you, Gibbs!”

“Thank you,” he said from behind the tissues.

“Gibbs, you’re sick,” Abby said very matter of factly.

“I’m fine, Abs.”

“You’re going to see Ducky,” she said.

“Abby, stop. I’m fi...ihh...fi...uhhhCHHSHH! CHSHH! CHIhSHHHEW!!”

“Bless you,” she said gently and then reassumed Bossy Abby: “You are not fine and you are going to see Ducky,” she said and took him by the wrist. Whether it was the last round of violent sneezes, his lack of energy, or general inability to say no to Abby, Gibbs let himself be lead towards the medical examiner’s office.

“Ah, Jethro, Abby, what are you doing here? I was under the impression your current case did not require my

services,” Dr. Mallard said as the pair came into the morgue.

“Ducky, Gibbs is sick,” Abby said.

“Is that so? Well, Jethro have a seat,” Ducky said kindly.

“Duck, I’m fine. Abby’s overreacting,” Gibbs said although even he could hear how hoarse his voice was getting.

“Be that as it may.”

Gibbs sighed. This was a battle he was not going to win. He sat on the edge of the cold metal table usually reserved for dead bodies. Abby stood next to him and placed her hand across his forehead and cheeks checking for fever. Ducky grabbed his stethoscope and said,

“Jethro, unbutton your shirt a bit so I can listen to your lungs, please.”

Abby moved behind Ducky and smiled as Gibbs began to unbutton his shirt. She jokingly began a little strip tease of her own without making a sound. Ducky leaned in to listen to his chest giving Gibbs a clear view of Abby. He laughed, which almost immediately turned into a cough. Ducky yanked the stethoscope out of his ears the amplified coughing was so loud. The coughing Gibbs pointed at Abby and Ducky turned to look at her.

“Oh, Abigail, please,” he said, hoping he sounded stern. “Do be a good girl and give us a few minutes would you?”

She put her hands on her hips and gave an indignant huff before winking at Gibbs and walking off to wait in Ducky’s office.

The doctor went back to trying to listen to Gibbs’s lungs. After a minute he said,

“Your chest sounds clear.”

“She’s overreacting, Ducky.”

“Is she now? Well, she nearly lost Tony to plague not six months ago so what do you say you humor her for a few minutes and let me make sure,” he said quietly.

Of course he was right, Gibbs thought and so he sat still and let his friend poke and prod him.

“Just a bad cold,” Ducky confirmed, speaking loud enough so Abby could hear him too. She took this as her cue to return from her exile.

“He’s okay?” she asked.

“He will be fine, my dear.”


“In a few days,” Ducky added.

Satisfied that Gibbs would pull through, Abby allowed him to return upstairs. As Gibbs sat down at his desk, Tony, Ziva and McGee all three walked over.

“Abby just called. Said you were sick,” Tony said.

Gibbs growled. She must have called as soon as he left the morgue. “I’m fine; just a little under the weather.”

Ziva looked confused. “What does that mean” ‘to be under the weather?’ It’s not raining. In fact, the weather has been very pleasant all week.”

“No, Ziva. It’s an expression. It means he isn’t feeling well,” McGee explained.

“English is a very strange language,” she said.

“Get back to work,” Gibbs said. They all knew that tone. Even congested and tired, he had the unmistakable no nonsense edge they all respected and feared a little. In truth, it wasn’t all bad that Abby had informed everyone that he was sick because he now no longer had to try and hide his illness from the team. That’s not to say that it an easy day by any means. Shortly after he ordered his team back to work, Jen came down from her office to check on him--Abby had really been busy. When the Director came back after lunch she brought him a glass of hot tea with honey which may have soothed his throat but deeply offended his taste buds. Gibbs was forced to let Tony interrogate a suspect that afternoon which deeply offended his pride but he had to admit that he wasn’t exactly intimidating when he had to stop and sneeze every five minutes. Gibbs actually managed to keep his temper in check for most of the day despite how awful he felt. However, later that evening he was tired, edgy and they still had made no progress towards solving their case. So when he sneezed a harsh “hhuhhCHHHSSH!! HuptCHHSHH!!” and was met with a perfectly synchronized “Bless you” from his team he snapped,

“Knock it off, all of you! I...HuhhCHHSHH! HuhhCHHSHEW!” Gibbs sighed and ran his hands over his face. “All three of you get out of here. Go home; we’ll start fresh in the morning.” It was as close to an apology as he would ever get and before he knew it he was alone again. His head was pounding and he was so tired.

Tony’s meeting with Jenny had taken forever. Sometimes he thought he should just keep a sleeping bag under his desk to save time. He yawned as he made his way down the steps towards the dark bullpen. He put on his jacket and grabbed his keys off his desk, ready to finally head home, but when he turned towards the door Tony saw Gibbs slumped over his desk. Any observer could tell Tony was weighing his options: he could wake Gibbs up and get hit in the head or he could let him sleep and get hit in the head the next morning for leaving Gibbs at work. Given his options, Tony decided to face the music sooner rather than later. He walked over to Gibbs’s desk and said,

“Boss. Hey boss, wake up.” Gibbs didn’t even budge. Tony edged a little closer. “Come on Gibbs, wake up.” Nothing. Anthony DiNozzo had arrested terrorist, rapists and murderers but the prospect of having to physically touch Gibbs to wake him up truly frightened him. Tony took a deep breath and put one hand on Gibbs’s back and the other on one of his forearms and gave him a gentle shake. “Boss, come on, you’ve got wake up. Boss?”

“There had better be a good reason why you’re waking me up, DiNozzo,” Gibbs growled still with his head buried in his arms.

“Well, it is nearly midnight, boss,” Tony said. Gibbs sat up and looked around, confusion written across his face. Before he had a chance to ask a question, however, Gibbs quickly spun his chair away from Tony and sneezed, “HuhhCHHSSHH! HuhhCHHSHH! HuhhYIHCHHSHHEW!!

“Bless you, boss.”

Gibbs shook his head still with his back turned. “HuhhCHHHS!ChhhSHHH! HuhhhAHHHCHHHSH!! The sneezes were strong and Gibbs looked exhausted as he pulled his crinkled handkerchief out of his pocket slowly turning back towards Tony. He looked so miserable that before Tony even knew what he was doing he’d pulled a clean handkerchief from his own pocket and extended it to Gibbs. Tony’s stomach dropped when his boss shot him “the look” but “the look” quickly faded as the relentless tickle forced Gibbs to grab the handkerchief from Tony just in time to catch another three sneezes, “CHHHSSHHH! HuhhCHHHSH!! Huh...huhh...HUHCHHSH!!”

“Jees, bless you, boss! Come on, let’s get out of here.” Tony pulled Gibbs’s jacket off the coat rack and handed it to him once he finally stood up.

“Thanks,” Gibbs said. Tony stayed a half step behind him as they made their way out of the building and towards the parking garage because Gibbs looked just a little unsteady, particularly after a sneezing fit--which happened a few times on their way to their cars. As they reached his car, Gibbs was stopped in his tracks with one such fit. He would sneeze three progressively stronger “HuhCHHSSHH!’s” straighten up for a second just to be pitched forward with another set. Tony felt awkward and helpless as he watched their strong team leader incapacitated with a head cold. With a final “HaahtCHHSHH!!” Gibbs leaned against the side of his car and took a moment to blow his nose and catch his breath. When he looked up and saw Tony he nearly laughed. DiNozzo had a look of near panic etched on his face. He’d been worried in the office but now he looked like Gibbs might sneeze at any second and break into a thousand pieces.

“Umm...boss, are you okay? I mean, I know you’re okay but I could drive you home if you’re too tired.” The look Gibbs gave DiNozzo made him squeeze his eyes shut in expectation of the head smack he knew was coming. Instead, he felt Gibbs pat him on the shoulder and not in a way meant to inflict bodily harm. Tony opened his eyes.

“I’m okay DiNozzo,” Gibbs said.

“You sure? I mean you sound--”

“I’ll see you tomorrow,” he said getting in his car.

“Yeah, boss. See you tomorrow.”

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Thank you so much for writing this. :lol: I'm so glad you offered. You did a terrific job. :bleh: You had the way the characters talk and act down perfectly, from the coffee to the headsmack. I could totally picture this story happening in an episode. Great job!! :rolleyes:

If you ever wanted to write another one, I'd be all for it. :)

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This was awesome. Totally unfamiliar with the show, but I looked up enough to see that Gibbs is Mark Harmon, and of course the image of him like this is always :rolleyes:

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*holds out hands, Oliver Twist-style*

Please, matilda, may we have some more?




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  • 5 weeks later...

Wow. This s definately one of my favourite fics ever! Sneezy Gibbs is just soooooo hot! Is there any chance of more? I'd love to see how he deals with the next day, feeling even worse...


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